Synthese 149 (3):451-470 (2006)

Katherine Hawley
University of St. Andrews
Analytic metaphysics is in resurgence; there is renewed and vigorous interest in topics such as time, causation, persistence, parthood and possible worlds. We who share this interest often pay lip-service to the idea that metaphysics should be informed by modern science; some take this duty very seriously.2 But there is also a widespread suspicion that science cannot really contribute to metaphysics, and that scientific findings grossly underdetermine metaphysical claims. For some, this prompts the thought ‘so much the worse for metaphysics’; others mutter ‘so much the worse for science’.
Keywords metaphysics  realism  philosophy of science  inference to the best explanation  indispensability
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DOI 10.1007/s11229-005-0569-1
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